PASSIVE HOUSE SOLUTIONS
The term 'Passive House' refers to a low energy building standard and construction concept that has taken off across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Building to the Passive House Standard ensures a comfortable indoor environment, reduced heating and cooling demand and associated carbon emissions. Buildings that meet the Passive House Standard typically enjoy reduced energy costs of up to 90 percent when compared to typical building stock, and savings of up to 75 percent when compared to today's average new build.
The Passive House accomplishes this with high levels of insulation, energy efficient windows and doors, proper ventilation, including ventilation systems with heat recovery, and high quality planning, design and construction. Care is taken to reduce or eliminate thermal bridging at common junctions and thermal looping, when applicable. Passive homes may also utilise on-site renewable energy generation, such as solar (for hot water or electricity), wind and heat pumps.
Passive House heating demand is mathematically calculated for each property using a specially designed software programme called PHPP (Passive House Planning Package). The calculation is so specific to each property that details of the site location as well as the number of occupants is required.
Typical Passive House U-values required for properties in Ireland are as follows:
Wall U-Value Requirement:
Floor U-Value Requirement:
Roof U-Value Requirement:
Window U-Value Requirement:
While the Passive House Standard does not have specific U-value requirements for different climates, the design itself must be adapted to the local environment where it will be built. Most Passive Houses will have wall U-values between 0.10W/m2K and 0.15W/m2K. How these values are achieved may be more difficult depending on local conditions, but the Passive House method remains the same regardless.
CLASSES OF PASSIVE HOUSE
While on-site renewable energy generation has always been incorporated into the Passive House Standard, there has never been a requirement to generate a set amount of renewable primary energy. This changes with the introduction of the Passive House Plus and Passive House Premium certifications.
Passive House Classic
All categories within the Passive House Standard will now calculate a building's energy demand using renewable primary energy (PER), instead of primary energy demand as it was in the past. The Passive House Classic primary renewable energy demand must not exceed 60 kWh/(m²a).
Passive House Plus
Renewable primary energy demand for a Passive House Plus must be 45 kWh/(m²a) or less. In addition, the building must generate at least 60 kWh/(m²a) utilising renewable energy measures. A Passive House Plus certified building will generate about as much energy as it consumes - making it a net-zero energy home.
Passive House Premium
A house certified to Passive House Premium may not consume more than 30 kWh/(m²a) PER. It must also generate at least 120 kWh/(m²a), meaning the house will generate more energy than it consumes over the course of a year. Energy storage will usually be required to meet demand during time periods with low energy gains (like winter months).
KORE PASSIVE SOLUTIONS
All of KORE's airpop (EPS) insulation products and solutions can be used towards achieving Passive House certification. Made from 98 percent air, KORE expanded polystyrene is durable, rot-proof, water resistant and will last the lifetime of the building. Learn more about the benfits of expanded polystyrene.
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